Does the silver American Eagle bullion coin really need a new reverse design?

Editorial column from May 26, 2014, issue of Coin World
By , Coin World
Published : 05/09/14
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While I don’t believe a design change is currently needed for the bullion coins — the consistency has given the silver American Eagle a reliable, credible brand worldwide with collectors and investors — a new reverse could be used selectively. 

For example, a new reverse design could be transformative for the Uncirculated American Eagle silver coin. These are struck on specially burnished blanks and have a “W” Mint mark, but to many collectors, they look the same as the regular bullion coin. 

Unlike the bullion coin, which is available from secondary market dealers for a few dollars over the spot price of silver, the burnished Uncirculated silver American Eagle is available directly from the U.S. Mint for $43.95 as I write this. 

The U.S. Mint has no problem selling the bullion and Proof versions of the silver American Eagle (in fact, it often can’t keep up with demand) but a new reverse could make the burnished Uncirculated American Eagle a coin at the forefront of collecting, rather than just another U.S. Mint offering.

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